Dec 20, 2009

Abu Dhabi to implement new fire code by next year

Abu Dhabi: New buildings in Abu Dhabi should ensure proper maintenance of safety systems as the International Fire Code for buildings will come into force from early 2010, authorities have said.

Periodic inspection and testing requirements will apply to all safety items and processes to reduce the threat of fire and minimise its impact, said a statement by the Department of Municipal Affairs (DMA) on Sunday.

The DMA is implementing stringent procedures to enforce the new codes across the Emirate's construction industry.

The code is expected to make the buildings in the emirate better protected against fire as all new construction and additions to existing structures will be required to comply with the code. Buildings should have safe and clearly indicated fire exits, smoke detectors, sprinkler systems and alarms that will alert occupants of any emergency situations.

Sessions

Safety during the construction phase is also addressed as the new fire code will ensure that workers and property under construction are well protected.

"The new family of building codes, including the fire code, requires all buildings to follow international standards of fire safety that will better protect the lives and property of our people across the Emirate," said Rashid Al Hajeri, chairman of DMA and chairman of the Building Codes Higher Council.

Hundreds of fire protection system designers, engineers, architects, and code enforcement agency professionals from across the Emirate attended the Building and Fire Codes Training Sessions.

"Once the codes are implemented, a new era of safety will begin where buildings will be better equipped to resist fire, thus protecting the lives of its occupants," said Ahmad Sharif, Under-Secretary of DMA.

"We will work continually with the International Code Council to ensure that the adopted Abu Dhabi Building Codes will represent current, safe and accepted technology that suits the Emirate of Abu Dhabi," he said.

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